Nashville Music Moguls Make ‘Billboard’ Power 100 List

PIctured (clockwise, L-R): Scott Borchetta, Clint Higham, Mike Dungan, Brian O'Connell, Clarence Spalding, Louis Messina, and John Esposito.

Pictured (clockwise, from top left): Scott Borchetta, Clint Higham, Mike Dungan, Brian O’Connell, Clarence Spalding, Louis Messina, and John Esposito.

Billboard recently released its 2015 Power 100 Index, and some of Nashville’s power players are included alongside other top industry moguls.

Topping the list is Universal Music Group chairman/CEO Lucian Grainge, who led the charge in breaking four new artists in 2014, including Iggy Azalea, 5 Seconds of Summer, Sam Smith,and Ariana Grande, each selling more than 1 million albums and track equivalents in the United States in 2014. UMG also distributed the year’s best seller, Taylor Swift‘s 1989.

At No. 2 is Live Nation president/CEO Michael Rapino. Live Nation claimed 22 of 2014’s top 25 tours. Rapino helps guide some 20,000 employees in 100 offices around the world.

Rounding out the Top 10 are: Azoff MSG Entertainment’s Irving Azoff (No. 3), Sony/ATV Music Publishing’s Martin Bandier (No. 4), Apple’s Jimmy Iovine (No. 5), Red Light Management owner/founder Coran Capshaw (No. 6), Sony Music Entertainment CEO Doug Morris (No. 7), iHeartMedia Chairman/CEO Bob Pittman (No. 8), Creative Artist Agency’s Rob Light (No. 9), with Apple’s Eddy Cue and iTunes’ Robert Kondrk at No. 10.

Several power players with strong Nashville ties also made the rankings, including:

No. 23: Big Machine Label Group Founder/CEO Scott Borchetta
No. 33:  Universal Music Group Nashville Chairman/CEO Mike Dungan
No. 37: Live Nation president of country music touring Brian O’Connell
No. 66: Warner Music Nashville president/CEO John Esposito
No. 74: The Messina Group president Louis Messina
No. 76: Maverick partner Clarence Spalding
No. 93: Morris Higham Management’s Clint Higham


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About the Author

Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at [email protected]

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